Election 2020: Political party policies and family and whānau violence

Tue 13 Oct 2020

A range of organisations and networks have compared political parties' policies relevant to family, whānau and sexual violence ahead of New Zealand's General Election 2020.

The election is this Saturday 17 October, with early voting open now. 

The Gender Justice Collective - Te Roopu Manatika-ā-Ira has surveyed more than 3500 women, womxn, trans women, wāhine and non-binary people about "what they need to be able to live in the fullness of their being alongside those they love." The Collective has used the survey results to create a scorecard ranking how political parties are supporting gender equity. They have also shared answers from political parties to questions, including livestream Q&A, about issues and themes from the survey.

RespectEd Aotearoa and Wellington Rape Crisis held a webinar in September 2020 asking the major political parties about their approaches to wellbeing, safety, and sexual violence in Aotearoa. A recording of the webinar is available online. It includes NZ Sign Language interpretation.

Tick for Kids is a movement designed to engage candidates in public discussion about what needs to be done to improve life for children and young people in Aotearoa. They asked New Zealand’s main political parties whether they support action on 40 evidence-based policies that the Tick for Kids members advocate for children’s and young people’s well-being. See the responses in the scorecards on education, inclusion and connection, health and mental health, environmental, income and welfare, and housing. The Tick for Kids media release provides a summary of the political scorecards.

Barnardos, Te Kahui Mana Ririki, Whānau Āwhina Plunket and Save the Children New Zealand have come together to launch the Five to Thrive campaign. The campaign sets out five key areas where they highlight urgent change is needed to ensure Aotearoa’s tamariki can thrive. The five key areas are:

  • Realise the potential of whānau Māori
  • Invest in children's early years
  • Lift children and families out of poverty
  • An affordable and healthy home for every child
  • Mental health support for every child and new parent.

VOYCE – Whakarongo Mai has launched a campaign calling on incoming Members of Parliament to make 6 promises to the more than 6000 tamariki and rangatahi currently in state care in Aotearoa New Zealand, and to those who come into state care in the future.

Media outlet The Spinoff has worked with the organisation Policy to create an interactive tool allowing voters to compare the policy positions of the main parties. The Policy.nz tool allows readers to look through policy areas including "family justice and safety," compare the parties' positions and drill down for more detail.

Radio NZ's Election 2020 coverage includes a guide to party policy. The guide is a directory of where to find information about the views and policies of parties represented in the last Parliament if they were re-elected. Information is grouped into areas such as justice, and welfare and social development.

Justice advocacy organisation JustSpeak has outlined a vision for a society without prisons in their 2020 election campaign. The campaign centres on their Blueprint for a Just Aotearoa. The Blueprint sets out three key visions for the justice system: build communities not prisons, decolonise the justice system and ensure every whānau and community have the resources they need to thrive. JustSpeak also created a scorecard which looks at the justice policies from all major political parties, and how they stack up against the visions outlined in their Blueprint.

The Equality Network is a non-partisan organisation of groups dedicated to reducing poverty and inequality. They have written an Election Statement and ranked the policies of the main political parties on issues related to reducing inequality. 

The Child Poverty Action Group has outlined their policies to eliminate child poverty and published an election policy scorecard ranking the major parties on key priorities to eliminate child poverty.

Rainbow Law, run by law students at the University of Auckland, have launched Rainbow Election 2020, a policy tool designed to highlight 15 of the most pressing issues faced by New Zealand’s LGBTQI+ community. The website provides an overview of the policies and political parties' positions. Also, the Youth Sector Rainbow Collective has put together a list of key demands from Rainbow organisations in Aotearoa for government priorities. 

Disability advocates and service providers held a Disability Sector Election Event to invite politicians to talk about their policy priorities for people with disabilities. 

The Council of Trade Unions has graded the major political parties’ employment policies including safer sick leave, fair pay agreements, four weeks minimum redundancy, better health and safety at work, stronger public services and living wages for all.

In June 2020, Hui E! Community Aotearoa, ComVoices, Sue Barker Charities Law, Trust Democracy and the Todd Foundation jointly hosted a webinar asking New Zealand politicians how they would support a thriving community and voluntary sector -  see the brief written summary of the webinar discussion.

Make sure to vote on the issues that are important to you. Advance voting is open in many locations. Find more information on the Electoral Commission website.

Related news

UN Women has published the report Data and violence against women in politics: Expert group meeting report and recommendations (2020). 

Related media

Election 2020: Labour finally talks justice, Newsroom, 10.10.2020

Election 2020: Te ao Māori policies in two minutes, The Spinoff, 08.10.2020

Election 2020: The welfare and equity policies in two minutes, The Spinoff, 07.10.2020

A long way to go before gender is truly on the agenda, Stuff, 05.10.2020

Election 2020: The crime and justice policies in two minutes, The Spinoff, 05.10.2020

Election 2020: Fixing the injustice in our justice system, Newsroom, 01.10.2020

Strategy to transform family violence written off as 'too Māori', Stuff, 27.09.2020

Tick. Tick podcast: The positive fightback against online hate in the election, Stuff, 26.09.2020

Giving a voice to our tamariki in state care, One Breakfast News, 15.09.2020

'Six promises for 6000' - Youth-led petition calls on MPs to increase quality of state care, One News, 13.09.2020

Five to Thrive sets challenge for government, Waatea News, 11.09.2020

Five ways the next government can be an honourable Treaty partner, The Spinoff, 07.09.2020

Rainbow Election 2020 highlights LGBTQI+ issues – and a lack of policy, The Spinoff, 03.09.2020

Election 2020: What women want this election, Stuff, 22.08.2020

‘Our mahi carries on’, Gisborne Herald, 08.08.2020

National Pledge To End Family Violence Heads To Parliament Grounds, Press Release: Safe Man Safe Family Charitable Trust, Scoop, 05.08.2020

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